Here’s some news I never expected to hear- and yet at the same time it’s something that doesn’t surprise me when it comes to Warner Bros. After all the bullsh1te and all the problems and reshooting the entire freaking movie with Renny Harlin, Warner Bros. is mulling the idea of releasing Paul Shrader’s version of Exorcist: The Beginning in limited theaters before a DVD release. I’ve talked to numerous people who were linked to Shrader’s version who ALL said it was a pile of crap. Read on for this interesting scoop…Davis DVD writes, “The fate of director Paul Shrader’s much-debated version of ‘The Exorcist’ prequel is expected to be decided by month’s end – and the film could end up seeing the big screen after all. Production company Morgan Creek hired Shrader to direct the movie, but after the $35 million-budgeted film was delivered, Morgan Creek decided it wanted an obviously scarier film than Shrader had envisioned. The studio then brought in Renny Harlin, and his $50 million-budgeted Exorcist: The Beginning bowed in theaters on August 20th.
“We are definitely leaning toward releasing [Shrader's version] in some form,” said Guy McElwaine, president of Morgan Creek. “Paul was out here all last week and we talked about it a lot.” Although the film could roll out directly to video, McElwaine said he is considering giving the film a limited theatrical launch first. Warner Home Video is expected to release Harlin’s version, but no street date has been formally announced. “I would say it’s more likely to be afterward [in 2005] sometime,” said McElwaine, explaining that he’d prefer to be free of both the ultra-competitive Oscar theatrical season and the holiday DVD crunch. For his part, Shrader is optimistic that some answer will come shortly about finally delivering his film to an audience. “To my knowledge,” the filmmaker said, “the decision is this week’s business at Morgan Creek.” (thanks to Video Business)